After being on maternity leave for nearly five months (9 weeks off from work+Summer break), I left my baby for the first time this past Monday. It was incredibly difficult. There were tears. There was stress. However, my husband and I are incredibly blessed in that he has a work schedule that allows him to stay with Elliott a few days a week. The other days, my wonderful mother-in-law, and my best friend watch him.
Having a baby is beautiful. You learn things about yourself you never knew. You are consistently in awe of the amazing baby you have created. You fall even more in love with your spouse than you thought was possible.
I’ve always know Shane was an amazing partner. Before we were married, we were best friends. When we became married, my life felt truly complete. Don’t get me wrong, we sometimes bicker and poke fun at each other, but it all seems to create an even greater bond between us.
Monday was trying. I left Elliott with my husband, and I still cried! My husband sent me updates, pictures, called me, did whatever it took to comfort me on my first day back at work. When I got home, I played with our baby boy while my husband cooked dinner. We then took turns eating while caring for Elliott. We did a lot of other things for each other on Monday too, but I forget them because I’m a new mom and school is starting soon.
Tuesday came, and I had already figured out that even though being a working/pumping mom is tough, my husband, my teammate, would ease my transition into helping me balance both worlds.
On Wednesday, I picked up our son, came home, set him on our bed, let the dogs out, changed, let the dogs back in, picked up Elliott, fed the dogs, got all of my pumped milk stored in the freezer, rinsed and sterilized all of my pump parts, played with Elliott, cleaned Elliott’s sticky yellow poop off of my arm after he had the world’s biggest blow out, cleaned him, cleaned his bouncer that he also got poop all over, changed the trash bag in the diaper pail, refilled the wipes, practiced rolling with Elliott, took Elliott on the “mommy coaster” (roller coaster made from bouncing and my legs), and somewhere in there I managed to take a couple of breaths.
Did reading that feel chaotic? It was. And it all happened within the span of an hour and a half!
My husband came home and played with the baby. I rinsed the bath out. My husband changed and got Elliott ready for his bath. I got all of Elliott’s clothes in the laundry. My husband bathed Elliott. I nursed Elliott.
Elliott falls asleep.
It’s 7:45, and we can finally start dinner. It’s 7:55. Elliott wakes up. And cries. A lot. I eat while standing around our island and holding/bouncing Elliott. My husband offers to do the same. We take turns, switching back and forth. We finish dinner and then take turns trying to finally get Elliott asleep. Once Elliott falls asleep, my sweet husband turns on The Bachelorette, which, mind you…he despises, and he offers to watch it with me.
Our night was busy, and it was chaos, but it was love. We worked together. We do things to comfort one another and help each other simply get through the day. Parenting and marriage is nothing without a teammate. This is a long post and certainly, redundant and somewhat boring, but it shows life, and most importantly, it shows love.
Find a teammate in your spouse.